Alan Williams

Pacific Notes: Teodosic, Davis, Fox

There’s no exact timetable for Milos Teodosic‘s return, Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times writes. The seasoned Clippers rookie is making progress after missing Saturday’s contest but remains sidelined with the same injury that plagued him earlier this season.

Teodosic missed 22 games with the plantar fascia injury from October to mid-December but managed to work his way back into a significant role in the Clippers rotation.

On the season, Teodosic has averaged 8.4 points and 5.2 assists in 24.4 minutes per game for the Clippers.

There’s more out of the Pacific Division tonight:

  • The Warriors always tend to have an eye on their major long-term goals, kicking around possible acquisition targets that they could pursue when the time is right. Tim Kawakami of The Athletic writes that one of those targets could be Anthony Davis.
  • Rookie guard De’Aaron Fox has made a conscious effort to be more aggressive to take advantage of his speed, specifically in half-court sets. As Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee writes, the decision paid off in a recent Kings‘ win. “I was just able to create and if it wasn’t my assist it was a hockey assist – so it was a pass and another pass. Just trying to be able to start the offense and get the defense moving.
  • The Suns won’t be welcoming big man Alan Williams back to the lineup before February but the 24-year-old is still heavily involved with his team. Scott Bordow of the Arizona Republic writes that Williams has become a very noticeably enthusiastic supporter of his teammates.

Suns’ Alan Williams To Miss Six Months

Suns big man Alan Williams underwent a meniscus repair of his right knee today in Phoenix, the team announced in a press release. According to the announcement from the Suns, Williams will miss most of the 2017/18 season after undergoing the procedure — he’s on track to return to full basketball activity in approximately six months.

Williams suffered the injury last Monday when he landed on a teammate’s foot during a workout, per Marc Spears and Chris Haynes of ESPN. It’s another unfortunate blow for a Suns team that has already been hit hard by knee injuries this offseason. Brandon Knight tore his ACL and is expected to miss the entire 2017/18 season, while rookie Davon Reed will miss several months with a meniscus injury of his own.

[RELATED: Phoenix Suns’ depth chart at]

Williams, 24, took a step forward with the Suns in 2016/17. Although he only averaged 15.1 minutes per contest in 47 games overall, he was very productive when he played, recording 17.6 points and 14.8 rebounds per 36 minutes, and seemed poised to take on a bigger role going forward for the club.

A free agent this summer, Williams signed a three-year deal worth just over $17MM with the Suns. The second and third years of that contract are non-guaranteed, so it will be interesting to see if the young forward/center remains in Phoenix’s long-term plans next summer.

In the short term, bigs like Marquese Chriss, Dragan Bender, and the newly re-signed Alex Len could see a few extra minutes in the Suns’ frontcourt. If the team uses some smaller lineups, players like T.J. Warren, Jared Dudley or rookie Josh Jackson could see expanded roles.

Pacific Notes: Gallinari, Williams, Ennis

Newly acquired Clippers forward Danilo Gallinari has broken his hand punching an opponent in an exhibition match with the Italian national team, a report (via reveals.

The 28-year-old recently picked up by the Clippers in a three-way sign-and-trade deal lashed out at Jito Kok of the Dutch national team and promptly left the game to visit the hospital, the report says.

Per Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, it was his thumb that Gallinari injured but the setback isn’t expected to keep him out of Clippers training camp. Surgery is not expected.

There’s more from the Pacific Division:

Pacific Notes: Ball, Randle, Reed, Williams

Before he even suits up for a regular season game with the Lakers, Lonzo Ball has already made an impact on the team, J.A. Adande of ESPN writes. The scribe notes that the Lakers just sold the rest of its season ticket inventory and a recent season ticket viewing open house — which only yielded 175 sales last season — sold over 600 available seats for next season.

Ball certainly made an impression in the Las Vegas Summer League, taking home Most Valuable Player honors and generating headlines by simply wearing different brands of sneakers. Also, Adande notes that five summer league contests that generated the highest ratings were Lakers games. Despite being just 19 years old, Ball has become a polarizing figure and, in the early stages, living up to the hype generated by his outspoken father, LaVar Ball.

It will not be an easy feat to secure Rookie of the Year honors, or speak his father’s words of bringing the Lakers to the playoffs in 2017/18 into existence. However, playing a city and for a team that prides itself on Showtime, Ball has given the organization and its fans something to get excited about.

Here are additional notes from around the Pacific Division:

  • Julius Randle is entering his fourth NBA season and coming off a season where he averaged 13.2 PPG and 8.6 RPG in 74 contests. Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News writes that Randle is hoping to find improvement next season after altering his conditioning program and trimming down his body weight.
  • The Clippers signed Willie Reed to a team-friendly one-year, $1.5MM deal and he’s happy to be with the team, Basketball Insiders’ Cody Taylor writes. Blake Griffin and Patrick Beverley were among the teammates to welcome Reed to L.A. and he’s excited to begin playing with the club.
  • Alan Williams has parlayed a lack of college interest, international play, and shoddy NBA workouts into a three-year, $17MM deal with the Suns. As Scott Bordow of Arizona Central Sports writes, Williams is grateful to have both cashed in with the deal and remained with the team he rooted for as a kid.
  • Speaking of Williams, the Suns’ cap space after the signing is $6.3MM though the team also owns a $12.1MM hold on 24-year-old international talent Alex Len, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks (via Twitter).

Suns Re-Sign Alan Williams

JULY 26: The Suns have formally re-signed Williams, the team announced today (Twitter link). The deal will now officially eat into a portion of the cap room Phoenix had available.

JULY 10: The Suns have agreed to a deal with restricted free agent Alan Williams, according to Shams Charania of The Vertical, who reports that Williams will remain in Phoenix on a three-year, $17MM contract.Alan Williams vertical

[RELATED: 2017 NBA Free Agent Tracker]

Williams, 24, took on a bigger role in his second season with the Suns in 2016/17, though he only averaged 15.1 minutes per contest in 47 games overall. Still, he was very productive when he played, recording 17.6 points and 14.8 rebounds per 36 minutes.

A report last weekend indicated the the Suns had made Williams an offer in the neighborhood of $5-6MM annually over four years. His new deal is in that salary range, albeit for three years instead of four. Assuming he plays out the contract, the big man will be on track to return to free agency when he’s 27, perhaps setting himself up for a bigger payday at that point if he continues to develop.

The Suns entered the free agent period this month with an eye on a couple top-tier power forwards, but after missing out on Blake Griffin and Paul Millsap, the franchise decided to focus on retaining its own young players and perhaps accommodating salary dumps to add more assets.

With Williams locked up, Phoenix may shift its focus to getting something done with its other restricted free agent, Alex Len, assuming he remains in the club’s plans.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Suns Offer Alan Williams Four-Year Deal

The Suns have made a contract offer to restricted free agent Alan Williams, according to John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports 98.7, who reports (via Twitter) that Phoenix’s offer is a four-year deal in the range of $5-6MM per year.

Williams, 24, took on a bigger role in his second season with the Suns in 2016/17, though he only averaged 15.1 minutes per contest in 47 games overall. Still, he was very productive when he played, recording 17.6 points and 14.8 rebounds per 36 minutes.

Since free agency began, Williams has been linked repeatedly to the Knicks, with at least one Saturday report suggesting that New York may be preparing an offer sheet for him. Because the 6’8″ forward/center is a restricted free agent, Phoenix would have the opportunity to match any offer, but the team would clearly prefer to negotiate its own contract with Williams rather than risk having to match a more exorbitant deal from the Knicks or another club.

As Gambadoro adds (via Twitter), the Suns had originally planned on pursuing top-tier free agents, but with several Western Conference teams further loading up their roster this week, the franchise has decided to stay patient with its rebuilding plan. That means Phoenix is no longer in the hunt for Paul Millsap, as we heard on Saturday night.

In addition to Williams, Alex Len also remains a restricted free agent for the Suns.

Knicks Notes: Williams, Point Guards, Mills, Baker

The Knicks may submit an offer sheet to Suns forward/center Alan Williams, relays Marc Berman of The New York Post. GM Steve Mills has expressed a desire to get younger, and the 24-year-old Williams fits that blueprint. This was Williams’ second season in Phoenix, but the first time he saw any significant NBA action. He appeared in 47 games, averaging 7.4 points and 6.2 rebounds per night. Because Williams is a restricted free agent, the Suns can match any offer he receives. Berman states that salary might have been an issue for Phoenix if it had signed Paul Millsap, but it becomes less important now that the Suns are no longer pursuing the All-Star power forward. Berman adds that if the Knicks do acquire Williams, they will seek takers for Kyle O’Quinn‘s $4.5MM salary.

There’s more news from New York:

  • Entering a free agent market rich in point guards, the Knicks’ options may now be down to George Hill and Derrick Rose, Berman writes in a separate story. Jeff Teague signed with the Timberwolves Friday night and Jrue Holiday re-upped with the Pelicans this morning, taking away two potential New York targets. The Knicks have about $16MM in cap room, which likely won’t be enough for Hill, but Courtney Lee is being shopped to create more. The Nuggets and Pacers are reportedly also chasing Hill, which increases the chances that Rose might return to New York. The Knicks reached out to Rajon Rondo and Darren Collison, but Berman indicates they aren’t serious about either one.
  • With Phil Jackson out of the way, Mills is free to run the organization his way, tweets Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders. That includes trying to shed salary, get younger and find players who can contribute on both offense and defense.
  • One of those changes is to make Kristaps Porzingis the focus of the offense, something that Jackson resisted, posts Ian Begley on ESPN Now“That’s his next steps in his growth as a player, to be able to handle some of that,” coach Jeff Hornacek said. “He’s going to have to take that next step of taking over. I think he’s probably ready for that.” It’s not clear what that means for Carmelo Anthony‘s future in New York.
  • One Knick who is sad to see Jackson leave is Ron Baker, Berman relays in another piece. Baker agreed to a new two-year deal last night that will probably give him the team’s cap-room exception. “Obviously, I really enjoyed Phil Jackson, he taught me a lot,’’ Baker said. “The past year he wasn’t just a mentor but a really good friend. … That’s how the business goes sometimes.”

Free Agent Rumors: Durant, Hayward, Gay, Kings

The defending NBA champion Warriors started free agency off with a bang, agreeing to terms with two-time Most Valuable Player Stephen Curry to the richest pact in league history. The team will reportedly sign Curry to a five-year deal worth $201MM+ and now the focus turns to retaining the remainder of Golden State’s championship-winning roster.

Last year’s prized acquisition, Kevin Durant, led the team to a championship and is now a free agent. However, Chris Haynes of ESPN (via Twitter) reports that teams have not reached out to Durant’s camp to gauge his interest in leaving because they see it as a “waste of time.” Earlier this week, it was reported that Durant will wait to re-sign with the Warriors to allow the team to finish other offseason business, and he will not meet with other teams during that stretch.

Below are additional rumors surrounding this year’s free agency period:

  • If the Heat’s pursuit of Gordon Hayward falls through, the team may turn its attention to fellow free agent Rudy Gay, according to Chris Mannix of The Vertical (via Twitter). Mannix adds that Gay told the outlet he should be ready for the start of the season as he recovers from a torn Achilles.
  • The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor (via Twitter) cites three league sources who believe the Heat are the frontrunners for Hayward. The sunny beaches and warm weather of Miami, a popular coach in Erik Spoelstra, and a prominent role in which he can be the team’s primary scorer are all lucrative incentives, O’Connor notes. However, O’Connor acknowledges that it’s a fluid situation, and a lot could change based on Hayward’s meetings.
  • Restricted free agent Alan Williams is a “serious” candidate to sign with the Knicks, a source tells Marc Berman of The New York Post (Twitter link). While the Suns could match any offer for Williams, their willingness to do so may hinge on who else they’re able to land in free agency.
  • The Kings are intent on landing a power forward in free agency, according to Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated, who tweets that Zach Randolph, Patrick Patterson, and Taj Gibson are all on Sacramento’s radar. We had previously heard about the team’s interest in Randolph and Patterson.
  • According to Vincent Ellis of the Detroit Free Press (via Twitter), the Pistons have been in contact with Reggie Bullock, Aron Baynes, and restricted free agent Kentavious Caldwell-Pope since free agency opened late on Friday night.

Free Agent Rumors: Porter, Randolph, Millsap, Holiday

The Wizards‘ session with Otto Porter ended without an agreement, tweets David Aldridge of TNT. Porter plans to start meeting with other teams this weekend (Twitter link). That creates a potential opening for the Nets, who appear willing to offer the max of four years and $100MM, according to a post on NetsDaily. Philadelphia may also get involved, but the Sixers seem reluctant to make long-term offers. Washington has promised to match any offer for the restricted free agent.

There’s more late-night free agency news:

  • Aldridge has two more tidbits to pass along. The Cavaliers are interested in Grizzlies power forward Zach Randolph and plan to call him today (Twitter link). Also, Blake Griffin‘s decision to re-sign with the Clippers means the Suns will intensify their pursuit of  Hawks forward Paul Millsap (Twitter link).
  • Jrue Holiday met with the Pelicans tonight, but no deal was reached, tweets Sam Amick of USA Today. The two sides are expected to get together again in the morning.
  • The new $201MM supermax contract that the Warriors gave to Stephen Curry doesn’t include a no-trade clause or a player option, according to Anthony Slater of The San Jose Mercury News (Twitter link).
  • Spurs forward Jonathon Simmons has gotten calls from the Kings, Clippers and Timberwolves and is ready to start holding meetings, according to Shams Charania of The Vertical (Twitter link).
  • In addition to Simmons, the Clippers plan to meet with Nuggets forward Danilo Gallinari on Sunday and Jazz forward Joe Ingles this weekend, relays Brad Turner of The Los Angeles Times (Twitter link).
  • There’s a strong chance that Celtics‘ power forward Amir Johnson will sign with the Sixers, a source tells Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer. Johnson has a history with Philadelphia’s president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo, who traded for him in 2009 as GM of the Raptors.
  • The Kings met tonight with Andre Iguodala and Patrick Patterson, according to Sam Amick of USA Today (Twitter link).
  • The Timberwolves have put in a call to Ty Lawson as a possible backup for Jeff Teague, tweets Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News. The Pelicans, Thunder and Kings have also been in contact with Lawson.
  • The Grizzlies are the latest team to show interest in Kings guard Ben McLemore, relays Chris Mannix of The Vertical (Twitter link).
  • The Knicks contacted Suns power forward Alan Williams tonight, posts Ian Begley on ESPN Now. Williams fits New York’s goal of finding players who can contribute on both ends of the floor, Begley notes.

Alex Len, Alan Williams, Shabazz Muhammad Receive Qualifying Offers

Three more players are now officially on track to become restricted free agents on the weekend, per RealGM’s transactions log. The Suns have tendered qualifying offers to Alex Len and Alan Williams, while Shabazz Muhammad has received a QO from the Timberwolves.

Extending qualifying offers to potential restricted free agents is a housekeeping move to ensure that teams retain the right of first refusal on their respective free agents. However, QOs also represent one-year contract offers, so Len, Williams, or Muhammad could opt to accept their offers and sign a one-year deal once the new league year begins.

Len, 24, was the fifth overall pick in the 2013 draft, but hasn’t developed into a true impact player for the Suns. In 77 games (34 starts) last season, the 7’1″ center averaged 8.0 PPG and 6.6 RPG in 20.3 minutes per contest. Williams, an undrafted free agent big man, played a similar role in Phoenix, averaging 7.4 PPG and 6.2 RPG in 15.1 MPG (47 games).

As for Muhammad, the 24-year-old continued to play part-time minutes on the wing for the Wolves, having averaged 9.9 PPG, 2.8 RPG, and a .338 3PT% in 78 games last season.

Len and Muhammad, having failed to meet the starter criteria for RFAs, will receive qualifying offers worth $4,187,598. Williams’ QO will be worth a more modest $1,671,382.

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